Monday, December 20, 2010


 Christmas is quickly approaching and I feel as if I've missed the boat.  Really.  I mean, I've had a really had a tough year physically.  I feel as though I've been in a fog, and here we are just days before Christmas.  I've got a list of things to do in just a few days and I'm having trouble wrapping my mind around it.

Last summer, I thought that I would enjoy the Slow movement .  I longed for connection.  I wanted my kids to feel the connection to the land, the people, our food.  And somewhere along the road I lost sight of this.  I don't know if it was my physical illness, or that life just got busy.  I'm uncomfortable, I feel like everything is moving at warp speed.  I feel like I'm really missing out.  I have the desire to slow down, to see and feel moments for all that they can bring and give to me.

Slow down.  Listen to the water splashing on the shoreline, the boats in the Strait, the kids asking me to come with them outside.  The wind blowing through the trees, the neighbors chickens, ducks, and goats chattering.  Feel the sun on my face, the kids blowing kisses, and the grass in between my toes.  I need to slow down and focus on being still.
I'm going to learn meditation.  I always thought that I knew how to do this, but little did I know exactly what meditation is.  I can't sit still for two minutes, let alone ten.  I can't not focus on anything, my mind is constantly running.  I need to slow down.  I need to try a be in the present with a clear mind and focus on the silence, the   silence is a killer.  That's where I fall.  I have learned that meditation is not self learned.  You need guidance, I have found someone who wants to guide me in meditation.  Yeah!  I'm ready.

I am looking forward to Christmas, albeit a busy holiday for us, I'm going to focus on the moments.  As each one comes.  I'm going to enjoy now and not rush to what's next.  I'm going to slow down.

peace and happy holidays to you all!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

'tis the season...

for sharing, because that's what I do.

I have to share this website with you.

Everything is beautiful an incredibly inviting.

Santa, for Christmas, I want it all.  Thank you.

in absence there are cinnamon rolls

I could hear your gurggling tummies crying out for some attention all the way across the webisphere. I know you've missed me and perhaps wondered why I haven't been here. Well, I turned some much needed attention to myself and did a bit of healing. So that's my faboosh update and I'll leave you with a picture that will have everyone wondering....What the hell?

Yes, what you are looking at is my famous cinnamon roll (muffins).  If you take a closer look, all of these have lots of nibbles or chunks taken out.

This child, unarguably, is the culprit.  Really.  She even admitted to it when asked as if it were no big deal.  The sticky hands, frosting covered hair and face were also a let on.  Yes, she is eating grass in this picture.  It just goes to show you, she'll eat anything.

If you're looking for the cinnamon roll recipe you can find here - it's faboo and after a few years it gets tweaked a bit everytime, but no matter they are pretty much THE BEST.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Happy Birthday

You old fart!


I've been a little sick as of late. Actually, for the past two years, it has it's ups and downs. I've been diagnosed with many an illness and only then to have it retracted and called something else. I've been on a multitude of supplements, vitamins, prescription drugs, therapies, and treatments. I've been to many doctors and even been referred out to the big city a couple of times. I'm tired. My body aches. I feel deprived.

I paint myself up and pretend everything is great. I put on a great face and just deal with how I am. I find myself obsessive, pill popping, and eating to suppress the pain, the exhaustion, and the depression.

I know soon, I'll find someone who understands, knows how I feel, and will listen to what I have to say. Until then I will march on to my own beat, trying what I can to stay sane and comfortable.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Fermenting -Part 1: Homemade Yogurt

I have come to the conclusion, that after many months/year of researching homemade yogurt techniques and recipes, that they are pretty much all the same. Some are super technical and strictly to the book and other recipes are just throwing stuff together and waiting for the natural fermentation process.
I do not own a yogurt maker, and quite frankly, glad I don't. I've made runny yogurt and the super thick shit -both massively tasty and always just right. All are relatively easy once you've got the basics down and I hope my clumsy tutorial helps.

milk, raw milk yogurt starter, quart jars
~non reactive pot -enamel cast iron dutch oven, stainless pot
~food themometer -
~wooden spoon/high heat spatula -I've used both
~2 quart jars with lids-sterilized and prepped
~1/2 gallon milk -I've used everything from 2% to raw, unpasturized whole milk
~yogurt starter -my fave is a plain greek yogurt starter or some leftover yogurt from thelast batch
~dry milk powder -

milk -in this case I used whole raw jersey milk
1. Pour milk into pot and bring to a steady boil. Add powdered milk sometime during this process, I usually do around 160-170*F. I've read it helps thicken it up. Milk should be warmed to 180*F. Turn on oven to 350*F for one minute, turn off and turn on oven light -it shouldn't be 350*F, but more like 100* or less. I like to put the jars of yogurt in the oven for a bit and then move them to a cooler for the night or afternoon.
milk, slowly brought to 180*f
2. Immediately move pot to a sink filled with ice cold water(add ice if needed). Cool milk to 110*F. Drain sink. Pull out a cup or so of the heated milk and stir in the yogurt until dissolved. Approximately 2tbsp. of yogurt starter per 1/2 gallon of milk. Then add milk/yogurt mixture to heated milk and stir to completely mix in the yogurt mixture.
sorry that I don't pictures of this process for some reason
3. Pour your yogurt into the sterilized jars and screw on sterilized lids.
4. Put your jars of yogurt in the oven and cover with a towel. An hour or so later I usually put them in a cooler with the jars wrapped in many towels for 6-8 hours (really, this can be anywhere from 4-24 hours depending on your taste).
5. Pull the jars from the oven/cooler, and take a peek to make sure they have thickened up a bit. Put in the refrigerator for overnight or 8-10 hours, this will help thicken up even more.
6. DONE!

finished product! Your own yogurt
We love to add a bit of sugar (shh...yes, white sugar), brown sugar, honey, granola, jam, or fruit to ours. Yogurt is great for breakfast, lunch, or dinner and the health benefits have been lauded world wide.

For more information on the benefits of making your own yogurt check out this article on or some of the other books I used for reference over time are listed below.

Look for part 2 of fermenting on in the next couple of days


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

absence of mind

I'm really am feeling a bit of writers block. I think it's more so that my beloved laptop has passed on to the electronics afterworld, then a humanly brain fart though. It isn't to say I haven't been doing stuff around the homestead or coming up with crazy shit in my head. It also doesn't help much that when I take an ambien with a pain pill, I have some messed up dreams and those become my writings. Everything of course, is in pencil and paper form and doesn't make much sense to anyone, but me. Dammit for being a creative, lead smearing lefty.

I'm going to leave you with a post I did a while back on granola within it contains the recipe that I swear by. When I'm feeling an urge to make a major sweet mistake of snack, I just dip my hand into the granola jar for a handful and it's enough to curb. Awesome eh?

No excuses! Granola is incredibly good for you and easy to make. It is versatile, delicious, and completely customizable. My family likes it as a snack and I love it as a cereal too -toss some nanners on it and hmmmmm...

By the way... ugh I hate this text size and color, what the hell happened?

You have some stuff to look forward to. I'm working on a fermenting post that will be in two parts. The first part will be here, and you'll have to catch the second part on when I do my monthly post there on Wednesday, October 27th! Thank you and I bid you adieu - bowing out.

Friday, September 24, 2010

death of a laptop... my day job

It was beautiful. It gave life to Facebook, Craigslist, Twitter, and Hundreds of favorites bookmarked. Blue on the outside, covered in My Little Pony stickers. The occasional sticky keys from cracker crumbs, spilled coffee, or syrup. Smudged screen from sticky fingers, sneezes, licks. Rarely was it ever idle unless I was chasing down kids. Perhaps it was jealous.

Sadly, my laptop has died. The black screen of death came again and it could not be revived. No CPR. No jump drive with special coding and updates. Nothing. An untimely death. And of course a deadline was looming and pictures needed to be edited. I'm sad. I cried. I'm still mourning. You may shed a tear for me.

Thankfully, I was able to copy my pictures, recipes, and notes to the external hard drive. Now I'll be camping, temporarily, on my daughter's laptop. She's glaring at me as I type.

Now, I'll be saving my tips for a replacement. Sigh.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Weekly dinner menu

Below I've included our dinner menu plan through Sunday, September 26th. I won't claim that we stick to this exclusively, sometimes something like a volleyball game, soccer, or life gets in the way and we have to switch things up for convenience, but I'm hater on drive-thru so usually it's exchanged for some breakfast dinner or snack night.

Sunday, Sept. 12 - BBQ Salmon with steamed baby reds and green beans - or it'll be pancakes

Monday, Sept. 13 - steamed veggies with rice noodles

Tuesday, Sept. 14 - minestrone and fresh whole wheat bread

Wednesday, Sept. 15 - Chili dogs and home fries

Thursday, Sept. 16 - baked macaroni & cheese with green beans

Friday, Sept. 17 - homemade personal pizzas

Saturday, Sept. 18 - leftovers/new recipe

Sunday, Sept. 19 - keilbasa, potato salad, & homemade rolls

Monday, Sept. 20 - rice noodles, with cabbage, cilantro, & sprouts

Tuesday, Sept. 21 - won ton soup and cabbage salad

Wednesday, Sept. 22 - scrambled egg burritos

Thursday, Sept. 23 - chicken/beef/veggie skewers

Friday, Sept. 24 - Crepes! Sweet or Savory

Saturday, Sept. 25 - leftovers/new recipe

Sunday, Sept. 26 - Turkey Dinner!

If ever, you have a question about how I do my menus or recipes just send me a message. I'm more than happy to share.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Doh! part deux & a recipe

Since I've clearly been neglectful to this blog, I have decided a recipe is in order. Something I haven't done in ages, therefore, it should be a treasured treat for you all.

So simple a four year old can do it or George Bush's wife -what's-her-face, Barbara. No. Laura. That's the right Bush wife, Laura.

Cowboy Cookies
(recipe adapted from Laura Bush's Cowboy Cookies)

makes about 3 dozen large cookies depending on size
prep time: 15-20 minutes bake time: 12-14 minutes

ingredients - adapted for what we had on hand
3 cups all purpose organic flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tbsp. baking soda
1 tbsp. ground cinnamon -this is too much for us, so I use just a bit less
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter at room temp.
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
3 large eggs
1 tbsp. vanilla
3 cups semi sweet chocolate chips
3 cups organic old fashioned oats
1 1/2 cups organic flaked coconut

1. preheat oven to 350 degrees f. Cookie pans should be coated with parchment paper or silpats

2. In a medium bowl, mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, ground cinnamon, and salt

3. In mixer bowl, cream butter on medium speed for about 2 minutes. Beat in sugars, scraping sides until fluffy for about 3 minutes.

4. Add the eggs, one at a time, cream well after each egg. Add the vanilla.

5. While reducing the speed, add the flour mixture to the butter mixture gradually, until just combined.

6. With a big spatula or wooden spoon, fold in the oats, chocolate chips, and coconut.

7. For each cookie drop 1/4 cup of cookie dough onto the cookie pans, about 3 inches apart. Bake until the edges are set and browned, and the middle is still fluffy looking. Baking about 12-14 minutes. Cool on the pans and chow down baby!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Happy AUGUST! and where did our summer go?

I've been contemplating a boring blog post for a while now. You know the kind that really has no meaning or benefit to anyone except for the writer? Yep, that's the one, and this may be it. I usually enjoy the month of August, but we're coming up on the half way point and I feel like it hasn't even begun. Blame it on our lack of a summer season, me feeling under the weather, or just that life is going by too fast.

My oldest two children have been gone since the fourth weekend in July and don't return until this weekend. I have missed them so incredibly much. I may have days were I am beyond frustrated with a certain teenage girl or the tween boy who on occasion likes to press my no-no buttons. I've been doing this shared summer for the past ten years and it hasn't gotten any easier on me. The day they leave, I begin my countdown until their return. To top everything off, Zak broke his hand right before he left. So, I haven't even got to see him in his cast yet. Mi so sad.

It's been rather depressing, the weather and all. We had a few awesome days at the beginning of July, and then gloomy. I mean, we live in Sequim and really we did okay for the sunshine part of it, but no where it usually is. My garden is suffering hard from it too. Well, either it's the weather or that my black thumb of doom has returned.

our sad, sad garden
one of many sad tomato plants -it did give two beautiful tomatoes before dying back

And I discovered this blessed soul. More to come on this little piece of heaven.

hello beautiful

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

mmm...what's that taste like?

Holy moley, I have been busy! With our camping vacation behind us, and we're now to the half-way point of our remodel -more of that to come on a later post -I've got more time to spend here, surfing the internets, my farm, baking, and POSTING AS A CONTRIBUTING BLOGGER at HOMEGROWN.ORG!!!! Yes, that noise you hear is me jumping up and down and screeching like a 14 year old girl at a Justin Bieber concert -I know this because I experienced this first hand only a few weeks ago. See.

You can check out my posts the fourth Wednesday of every month over at HOMEGROWN.ORG! Oh, the giddyness is worse than the jimmy legs!

Okay, now seriously. I know you are all dying to read about my weekly menus so I'll post the plan for the next two weeks. All menus are subject to change, shirt and/or shoes are not required-hell, clothes are optional at most meals.

Monday, July 26th - Yakisoba noodles with veggies

Tuesday, July 27th - Bean soup with homemade wheat bread -too frickin' hot man!

Wednesday, July 28th - White rice with Chinese BBQ beef

Thursday, July 29th - Tacos beef/chicken/veggie -to be determined

Friday, July 30th - buttermilk pancakes or if I get my way strawberry crepes!

Saturday, July 31st - leftovers/new recipe or we'll eat out -lazy asses

Sunday, AUGUST 1 - Crockpot chicken with rice and veggies

Monday, August 2 - warm chicken salad pitas (use leftover chicken from sun.)

Tuesday, August 3 - Grilled tomato and cheese sammies with salad

Wednesday, August 4 - Rice stick noodles with stir fry noodles

Thursday, August 5 - Spaghetti with olive oil and veggies

Friday, August 6 - buttermilk waffles and strawberries

Saturday, August 7 - leftovers/new recipe or eat out 'cause I'm tired as hell

Sunday, August 8 - Keilbasa and Eggs!

Monday, August 9 - Pasta salad with veggies and bread

and there you have it. If you are interested in any of the above recipes, just ask. I'm more than certain I haven't posted many of them and I'm happy to share. More pictures to come as well.

If your interested, the following is what we'll have for breakfasts. In no particular order and of no particular nutritional value. Hey, we're working on this one.

Oatmeal, Eggs -anyway you want 'em and with whatever I'm handing out at the moment, toast, english muffins, yogurt, granola, fruit, boxed or bagged cereal -pretty much whatever was on sale except for the sugary shit, pancakes, waffles -usually not frozen, but every once in-awhile I get a wind up my skirt and pick up eggos, and/or hashbrowns -the real stuff, just like at the restaurant with clarified butter and all that fatty goodness.

I'm up for questions anytime. Just throw 'em at me. You'll either get a great answer or one with absolutely no value to you at all. Cheers!